This past weekend I had the fantastic experience of meeting quite a few of my fellow Ohioan YA authors. A group of us were on the "Why YA?" panel for the 2012 Lori Foster Reader & Author Get Together in Cinncinnati. Not only did I get to see the lovely Julie Anne Lindsay again, I also met quite a few of my fellow Lucky 13'ers (Melissa Landers & Jennifer McGowan) as well as Carey Corp and Lori Langdon, co-authors and members of the Honestly YA blog, and the uber-cool Leanna Renee Hieber. The cherry on top of the icing on top of the cake was meeting my fellow Katherine Tegen / Harper Collins imprint-sister Liz Coley.
I love meeting people in real life... yeah that might sound funny when you say it aloud and without context, but I think most people understand what I mean. Not only did we get the initial AAAAAA!!!! commiserate with jumping up and down when we spotted each other's nametags, but we also got to talk to each other in real time.
Yeah. Real time. Much like real life, it doesn't require an internet hookup or the patience of waiting for a response to load. I don't get the chance to talk industry with anyone in real life, unless I intend to spend over 3/4 of the conversation explaining terms like WIP, CP, word count, beta, edit letter, query or having to quickly backtrack when using the word "submission."
It was truly lovely to just be able to talk to real writers as opposed to typing to them. After having crashed on RC Lewis' couch last month, and warmed up a few chairs with friends in the corner (by the buffet tables, ahem) I highly recommend to anyone who hasn't already made that personal leap to go out of their way to meet the people on the other end of the keyboard.
They have good hair.